Edmunds Answers



  • Stever@Edmunds 12/01/09 8:14 pm PST

    Tiger Woods' airbags didn't deploy in his recent accident, reportedly because the vehicle was going slower than 33 mph.

    Check your owner's manual. A CarSpace member says that this language is in some GM manuals:

    "In any particular crash, no one can say whether an airbag should have inflated simply because of the damage to the vehicle or because of what the repair costs were. For frontal airbags, inflation is determined by what the vehicle hits, the angle of the impact, and how quickly the vehicle slows down. For roof-rail airbags, deployment is determined by the location and severity of the side impact."

    You generally don't want the airbags going off in low speed or low impact crashes because the injuries that can be caused by the airbags can be worse than those caused by the wreck itself.

  • obyone 12/02/09 1:26 am PST

    To answer your question, the airbags should not deploy if the car hits a pedestrian under 30 mph. The impact will not cause enough deceleration unless of course it was a sumo wrestler.

  • 99intrigue00 12/08/09 3:56 pm PST

    Generally speaking, airbags located in the steering wheel are designed to prevent injuries to the face called LeFort fractures, which are through and through fractures in these areas:

    Airbags are meant to supplement seat belts. If you were wearing your seat belt, and if you didn't get one of these, you didn't need an airbag, and you saved the hassle and expense of replacing them.

    If you like my answer, please vote for me. Thanks.

  • hudsonthedog 01/07/10 1:47 am PST

    Airbags need multiple sensors to go off at the same time. Some vehicles need two or three to go off at the same time; some only have two. Typically a deceleration sensor (probably not triggered in a pedestrian accident), impact sensor (possibly triggered, depending on WHERE the pedistrian was hit on the car), and a speed sensor (varies from vehicle to vehicle...Ford used to have this trigger set at 12 mph).


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